Kevin De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez helped Man City pull off a spectacular second-half comeback in the first leg of their semifinal against PSG. The Premier League side took control of the tie with the two away goals. PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino had eliminated Man City in the quarterfinals of the Champions League in 2019 while at Tottenham. He looked on course to repeat the feat when PSG captain Marquinhos headed past Ederson in the City goal.
Mbappe and Neymar caused Man City all sorts of problems in the first half. Man City came out a much-improved team in the second half controlling possession. De Bruyne’s cross into the box missed everyone leaving Keylor Navas stranded in the PSG goal. Mahrez then scored from a freekick that went through the PSG wall.
PSG: Navas (5), Florenzi (6), Marquinhos (7), Kimpembe (5), Bakker (6), Gueye (4), Paredes (6), Di Maria (8), Verratti (6), Neymar (7), Mbappe (7)
Subs: Pereira (n/a), Herrera (6),
Man City: Ederson (7), Walker (7), Stones (6), Dias (6), Cancelo (6), Rodri (7), Gundogan (6), De Bruyne (8), Mahrez (8), Bernardo (7), Foden (6)
Subs: Zinchenko (6)
Man of the match: Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City)
“[It was] two accidents for the two goals. I think we feel very disappointed. It was difficult to accept that it happened in the semi-final, and that is really painful that it happened at this moment.” Pochettino said. “We were better in the first half, but they were more consistent in the second half. I think it was difficult for us to cope with the demand and the physical condition.”
“If we play shy and not who we are, then anything can happen as they have the quality to turn it around. But if we play with quality as we did in the second half maybe we’ll have the chance to reach the final.” Guardiola said. “The first 15 minutes at Borussia Dortmund was the same, the first half at home vs Dortmund was the same. Everyone had the desire but we have to learn. It’s just the second time in our history we’re at this stage.”